Wnba season 2020
Photo Credit: WNBA

 

WNBA Season 2020: Will there be one?

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It seems that there won’t be any tip-offs anytime soon, while the NBA tries to determine whether or not they will complete the 2020 season. This means the WNBA is also questionable as to when they will begin the start of their new 2020 campaign.

 

With all the hype of the NBA possibly transitioning to Las Vegas and Walt Disney World to finish out the regular season, what does this mean for the WNBA and the start to their season? 

 

The WNBA initially planned to begin its regular season on  May 15th. Unfortunately, there isn’t a time table for when the season will get underway. The last statement released from the WNBA was April 17, 2020, the day of the WNBA Draft

On the conference call, Commissioner Cathy Engelbert stated, “We’re using this time to scenario plan regarding new start dates and innovative formats. But obviously, our guiding principles, as I’ve said in my statements that I put out, continue to be the health and safety of everyone that we would put — players, teams, coaching staff, and then obviously essential employees.” 

The WNBA has postponed training-camp that was set to take place on April 26th, and there is no date or guarantee of local team tryouts. 

The NBA has captured the attention of the world, and it seems like the WNBA has been forgotten, at least for now. I was scrolling down my twitter feed and approached a tweet that stated, “Quick reminder that ESPN didn’t have enough time to air the names of the 36 WNBA draftees. This was a response of a tweet that stated,ESPN will air a three-hour NFL schedule release show tonight at 8 pm Eastern. It will highlight key matchups, schedule flexibility, and ultimately, hope.” 

 

I laughed for a moment and then I thought to myself, where would the Las Vegas Aces play if the NBA finishes their season in Las Vegas?

 

The NBA seems to be moving with caution, allowing teams to open practice facilities, which will have a limited amount of players coming in and shooting hoops. This varies state by state on government regulations and rules. Teams are taking extra precautions and refuse to initiate any protocols until they are sure they can keep their players and staff safe. The NBA needs around 15,000 coronavirus tests in their possession to consider resuming their regular season. This means that the WNBA will also need a substantial amount of test to consider starting its new season, or the ladies will have to wave farewell to their season temporarily and anticipate a later start date than projected.

The WNBA social media accounts have remained silent in speaking about a plan of action throughout this adversity. The women ballers are using this time to work out from home, without a structured virtual training like football who plans to start their season on time in September. Teams such as the Sparks are taking advantage and delivering daily video instructions to players with inclined workouts. Still no time table of when the WNBA will open up their practice facilities so that they can begin play. WNBA simmers on the back burner, while the NBA constructs a plan of action to get their players back on the court. 

The WNBA becomes a little more complicated because some teams have players and coaches located across the states and in different countries. On May 7th, the Las Vegas Aces general manager Dan Padover announced that “Third-year center JiSu Park will sit out the 2020 WNBA season to train in her native South Korea this summer.” Las Vegas Aces tweeted, “@jisupark_twt will remain overseas in 2020. We look forward to seeing her in 2021.” 

 

I wonder if she would have made that decision if the season started on time? Due to the pandemic and no course of action planned for the WNBA, I guess the only thing we can do is follow the WNBA #BallinAtHomeChallenge on social media for entertainment. At the same time, the NBA  is proactive in pushing for their return.  

The NBA’s drive to finish out their season because the pandemic could ultimately push the NBA’s revenue stream, costing them $1 billion or more if they do not return. The suspended season can cost the NBA $40 million per team, and if the playoffs are forfeited, then it would expand past $1 billion. The NBA splits the revenue percentage with the WNBA

The women are projected to receive 20 to 30 percent of the revenue. While NBA players receive a bigger cup full of 50 percent, it looks like a big loss on both parties if ends don’t meet. Again the NBA has constructed approaches such as the ‘bubble concept’ to save the season. The WNBA has kept its silence because the NBA has taken the stage once again. 

The WNBA did have the spotlight on April 17th for the virtual draft, which maxed out as the most-watched WNBA draft in 16 years. This gave the league a thought that the WNBA is still acknowledged by the world.

 

Unfortunately, only during a pandemic.

 

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-Nyshon Zaragoza – Franchise Sports Media

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